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The CMEA(Connecticut Music Educator’s Association) music festival takes place each year in March. Music students from across Connecticut in grades 6-8 audition for a spot in either the Orchestra, Concert Band, Chorus or Jazz Band. Ridgefield Academy is part of the western region which has over 40 schools participating. Five students from Ridgefield Academy auditioned for this music festival. The students are Charlotte, Juliet A., Aubrey H. and Natalie R. in Grade 7 and Grade 8 student Bryce H.

To make it into a group, students prepare an etude on their instrument and demonstrate scales and sight reading in front of an adjudicator. They are graded on their performance and a cut off is created based on how many spots are available for each instrument in each ensemble. The CMEA music festival is a precursor to the All-State music festival which is for high school students. Out of five, three of the students qualified for spots in various ensembles. They are Juliet A. in Concert Band, Aubrey H. in Chorus and Bryce H. in Jazz Band.

The Concert Band is around 100 students and the chorus includes 150 students. The Jazz Band is smaller and includes about 30 students. All of the RA students did a wonderful job with preparing some difficult music and playing in front of a judge. Although not all of the students got in, RA music teachers Debbi Curry and Jamie Kaye were really proud of the work all the students did. Ridgefield Academy has students represented in three of the four ensembles and will be playing next to students of 40 different local schools.

The festival takes place this weekend at Wilton High School. Participating students have rehearsals this evening and all-day tomorrow, Saturday. Should you wish to attend and support your fellow RAers, the performances begin at 3pm on Saturday.